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Around 2,000 Indians have entered Poland: envoy to India

The evacuation of Indians through the Poland border, which the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had acknowledged as a “problem area”, has made some headway with close to 2,000 people, mainly students, crossing over by noon on Tuesday.

Written by Ritika Chopra | New Delhi |
Updated: March 2, 2022 7:18:34 am
India, India latest news, Russia, Ukraine, Russia Ukraine crisis, Russian invasion, Indians stranded in Ukraine, students in Ukraine, Poland, Ministry of External Affairs, indian expressIndian students who fled Ukraine sit in a refugee camp in Voluntari, Romania, Tuesday. (AP)

The evacuation of Indians through the Poland border, which the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had acknowledged as a “problem area”, has made some headway with close to 2,000 people, mainly students, crossing over by noon on Tuesday.

Adam Burakowski, Ambassador of Poland to India, told The Indian Express that roughly 1,700 Indians had safely made it to Poland till 7am (Polish time). “We have received almost four-lakh people already. Poland is ready to receive anybody and any number of people trying to escape Russian aggression. We don’t look at nationality,” he added.

However, hundreds of Indian students are still stranded in freezing temperatures, especially at the Shehyni-Medyka border checkpoint. Many have alleged discrimination by Ukranian and Polish border forces. Burakowski outrightly denied any discrimination by his country.

“This is absolutely fake. We don’t make any discrimination. We receive everybody who comes. We have also allowed Indians to enter without a visa,” he said.

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However, the Ambassador also acknowledged that there were “logistical problems” in evacuating a large number of people. “The situation on the ground is that there are lakhs of people (waiting at the border). Border police of both countries (Ukraine and Poland) are doing everything possible to help. But it’s such a big crowd. You can’t tell one-lakh people to cross over in five minutes. Yes, the waiting time is quite long, but we are doing everything we can,” said Burakowski. “The space (at the border checkpoint) is limited, you know. How do you accommodate one-lakh people at a border crossing which is not meant for such numbers?”

The Indian Express has learned that at least two Indigo Airlines aircraft are expected to fly out from the Rzeszow-Jasionka Airport on Tuesday evening, Polish time, and bring about 450 Indians back to the country.

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